While things can go terribly wrong after gastric bypass surgery, this is very uncommon and is only a serious concern for patients who are at high risk for surgery due to advanced age, a heart condition, severe diabetes or limited mobility. Pregnancy and childbirth carry a similar risk of death to gastric bypass surgery for normal risk patients. While the risk of serious complications runs between 2-3% for most patients, these complications are typically straightforward problems that can be very frightening, but are rarely life threatening. While most patients’ fears of dying on the operating room table or ending up in the Intensive Care Unit for months are understandable, these are extremely uncommon events. When you examine your risks closely, most patients have a decreased risk of death after surgery when the results are averaged over three to five years. While the surgery carries a small risk up front, the benefits of the procedure will decrease your risk of dying from other causes over the long run.